Mustaches for Maddie by Chad Morris

Hello all, this week’s post features an extremely brave young girl and the family who supported her through the diagnosis of a brain tumour. This story was one I found profoundly moved me as it was based on actual events that happened to the author’s own daughter. Biographical fiction such as this one always leaves a lasting impression on me. I hope it does the same for you!

Mustaches for Maddie girl holding blue umbrella shaped like mustache under rain from dark rain cloud
Engaging story

Title: Mustaches for Maddie

Authors: Chad Morris & Shelly Brown

Genre: Fiction – contemporary

Publication details: Shadow Mountain; Salt Lake City, Utah, 2017

ISBN: 9781629723303

What this book is about: Twelve-year-old Maddie’s quirky sense of humour earns her laughs from her classmates when she slaps on fake mustaches every chance she gets. Being funny gets her noticed by class queen Cassie, and things are looking up when Maddie is cast as Juliet in the school play. Maybe Juliet could wear a mustache? But when Maddie starts tripping when she walks and her hand starts curling up at her side, a trip to the doctor confirms Maddie has a brain tumour. In an instant, her world is turned upside down. Maddie doesn’t want anyone else to know. Especially Cassie, whose jealousy has turned to bullying. As Maddie’s surgery approaches, she wonders if her illness is giving her super powers because her imagination is bigger than ever, her courage is stronger than ever, and her compassion is about to be felt by more people than she ever imagined. 

My review: Wow!! What an emotional ride this story was!! Not only was the storyline and characters out of this world but are biased on real-life people. This whole story happened to the authors’ own daughter Maddie. Right at the back are two notes, one from the authors, her parents, and one from Maddie explaining what happened leading up to her surgeries, the real internet sensation #mustachesformaddie and the actual friends and family who supported them. This was a first for me: reading a biographical fiction story for tweens about real-life events from a young person today. The school scenes, the hilarity of the brothers and the loving parents were all expertly woven into the story, but most of all, Maddie’s courage in facing her surgeries and compassion towards those who bullied her. I commend the two authors who are also parents of this amazing young girl in all that they have achieved here. An awesome read!!

My rating: 5 ⭐

Additional notes: This title has been nominated for the AML Award for Middle Grade Novel in 2017 and was awarded the  Ohio State Buckeye Award in 2018.

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